Approx. 6 x 9.5 in. engraving (very good overall condition). Includes: Joseph H. Rainey of South Carolina (first African American representative in Congress); James T. Rapier, first from Alabama; Hiram R. Revels, first African American senator from Mississippi; Blanch K Bruce was the first Mississippian to serve a full term; and John R. Lynch was Mississippi's first African American Representative.
During the Reconstruction era, African Americans were all Republicans - the "party of Lincoln." After emancipation, they had to await citizenship before they could serve in Congress, which they did very shortly thereafter. As soon as Federal troops were withdrawn from the South, the state legislatures began passing "Jim Crow" laws to establish racial segregation and disenfranchise African Americans and poor whites by placing restrictive rules on voter registration.
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